In the late 1980s Peter Ackroyd invited me to meet Iain Sinclair, whose first novel, White Chappell, Scarlet Tracings, I had greatly admired. Ackroyd initially knew Sinclair as a poet, author of Lud Heat, an influence on his own wonderful novel Hawksmoor. Passionately interested in London, the three of us began to meet regularly. Sinclair was an admirer of the French situationist Guy Debord (The Society of the Spectacle) and popularised psychogeography in Britain. In his blending of myth, literature and close social observation, I felt he combined the virtues of Orwell and Pound.
Before long, in company with the likes of the rock guitarist Martin Stone, the creator of Watchmen Alan Moore, the crime novelist Derek Raymond and the gangster Tony Lambrianou, associate of the Krays, I found myself acting in The Cardinal and the Corpse, a film about the quest for a mythical Flann O’Brien Sexton Blake story.